Building Projects (All)

The Cupola building was built in approximately 1866…the end of the American Civil War. As you may imagine, owning a nearly 150-year old building comes with its share of challenges and projects. Plumbing, electrical, roof work, paint, masonry…we do them all. As there is a certain amount of art…and interest in this process…we will document much of our work on this page. Check in frequently…it’s bound to be interesting!

A New Roof!

Y’all might recall a post a few months back where-in I apparently accidentally challenged Thor to a duel and pretty much everything we own was seriously damaged in a series of severe storms…

Roof peeled and hatch gone.

Roof peeled and hatch gone.

The tally:
Destroyed roof and severe window damage on Cupola Art.
Hail-totaled roof on The Old Vic
Hail-totaled roof, windows, garage door, light-fixtures on The Suburban Blah House.
Totaled Little Rivet (but it’s not insured so I’ll just drive it).
Totaled Big Iron (also not insured)
$10k in damages to Da’ Altima (8 weeks in the shop).

The roof damage on Cupola Art was serious (along with the windows) and despite the tarps, we took a lot of interior damage…something like 640 square feet of ceiling and insulation came down, several light fixtures were damaged, and we lost some furniture and art…and art supplies.

Materials shortages, labor shortages, and the chaos in the industry due to the sheer amount of damage in north Texas area slowed things up a bit…but finally…the good news is starting! We have a roof on The Cupola! Woot!

First…the stuff showed up.

A truckload of "stuff".

A truckload of “stuff”.

A roof kit!

A roof kit!

The expensive part

The expensive part

Then, on the day work was to start…as we were sitting there, dude goes by several times with this on a truck. He looked lost so I flagged him down and said, “That’s for me!”

…and he just GAVE it to me. Ain’t life great!

Flagged him down and said, "That's mine!" and he gave it to me!

Flagged him down and said, “That’s mine!” and he gave it to me!

Very shortly though, the roofers showed up and spoiled my fun. They used the machine to lift huge piles of money on top of my roof.

Moving piles of money around.

Moving piles of money around.

The “thing” now…due to cost and durability, is a pvc barrier over insulation, the insulation fairs the roof deck as well as…well…insulating…it is a structural foam product and is easily firm enough to walk on without damaging.

3-1/2 R-20 insulation.

3-1/2 R-20 insulation.

The foam is screwed down to the existing roof deck with a few thousand big-honkin screws (technical term).

Foam screw/washer

Foam screw/washer

This is a small one.

A seven inch screw. They have bigger ones!

A seven inch screw. They have bigger ones!

The barrier is a PVC product that is 60 mil thick, and reflective white.

The barrier. It's 60 mil PVC.

The barrier. It’s 60 mil PVC.

It is 10′ wide and screwed down with the same large screws used on the insulation and a particular washer that gives some more bite to the product.

The "bitey" washer.

The “bitey” washer.

Step one: Install insulation and fair up roof. (they had various widths and wedges of foam to level things out).

Insulation going down.

Insulation going down.

Next the barrier/TPO went down. It is screwed all along the edge and then the seams are chemically and heat fused. This part went surprisingly fast.

Main covering goes down fast!

Main covering goes down fast!

Then the real work started…terminating all the walls and edges…the TPO is brought up and over the walls and screwed down with metal bars on top. It is heat-formed to the contours of the walls and glued to them. That work is what I call “fiddly bits” and is most often the hard part. This took 8 men the better part of two days to accomplish.

Heat formed and glued up and over the walls.

Heat formed and glued up and over the walls.

One problem this roof has always had was water could stand at the back…and this damages roofing materials. They faired the area with foam and made everything run to the scuppers.

Scuppers and drain slopes nicely faired

Scuppers and drain slopes nicely faired

Woot! Roofage!

Water proof!

Water proof!

The tower has endured decades of minor damage…I have work to do here. It is not leaking. This fall I will get up here and screw everything down, and add flashings to resemble the missing shingles (mostly not visible from the ground).

Tower repair needed...

Tower repair needed…

Somewhere in there I also constructed a new, two-piece roof hatch…much heavier than the last one which was demolished in the storm…and the roofers nicely covered that with TPO…

This is a better roof than has ever been installed on this building…so that is forward progress. R-20 insulation, COMPLETELY water-tight, extensive warranty, reflective white, and best of all…did I mention water-proof?

Brian McCarty of Regency Roofing and Construction, who also did the roof on The Old Vic, was our contractor for this, and I recommend him.

Next…we fix the inside. Ugh.

The first batch of ceiling stuff.

The first batch of ceiling stuff.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

Deposing the Throne…part the next.

So…this showed up.

A butt-load of heavy...

A butt-load of heavy…

That’s 20 sheets of mold/moisture resistant sheet-rock (commonly known as “greenboard”).

So…what to do with it?

Well…nail it up!

Nail it up

Nail it up

Throw some mud on it!

Throw some mud on it!

Throw some mud on it!

Put up the back-splash for the sink-bay.

Back-splash installed.

Back-splash installed.

And get a little wiring pulled…

Oh what a tangled web we weave...

Oh what a tangled web we weave…

…next time…button up the wiring…install the wainscoting in the bathrooms (same material as the sink bay but only 4′ high) and attack the entire area with a spray gun…

Lots done…but lots more to do.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer